Neil Hodgson settles in at Rizla Suzuki's British Superbike test

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Neil Hodgson completed his first day of a two-day test on the Rizla Suzuki yesterday (Wednesday) and, despite a bout of food-poisoning that sapped his strength, he made good progress with Chris Walker’s K7 GSX-R1000. 

First job was to re-acclimatise himself to the Cadwell circuit, which he hasn’t ridden in seven years. The last time Hodgson rode their was the 2000 season with GSE Racing on a Ducati in his epic battles with Walker in the British Superbike Championship who rode a Crescent Suzuki that year.

“Getting used to the track wasn’t a problem,” said Hodgson, “although I’ve got to say the track seems a lot safer than when I was last here and it looks like there’s been a fair bit of resurfacing work too.”

Then the team worked with him to get him comfortable on the bike and Neil Hodgson said: “It’s different. It feels so wide compared to the Ducati superbikes I’ve been used to racing. 

“My lap times are not there yet on the Suzuki and I’m a long way off from feeling comfy on it but I’ve no experience with this bike.

“We’ve made a lot of changes and I think that once I’ve had a good night’s sleep on it, we’ll come out tomorrow a lot faster.

“It’s not helped that I feel so ill. I’ve been sweating like never before, even after four or five laps, and I feel like I’m going to be sick at any minute. When I tested the factory Ducatis recently at Mugello I was doing 100 laps a day and not sweating like this.”

Gary Pinchin

By Gary Pinchin